How does one do two tours of duty in Afghanistan get deported from the very country they fought to protect? Only in America can something like this happen. ICE has taken Miguel Perez, Jr. into their custody and are prepared to deport him to due to a felony he was charged with. After being in the United States since he was 8 years old as a legal resident and if he was not considered a “legal” resident how in the name was he able to join the United States Army?
This man donned a military uniform and fought for this country and this is what the country does for him. Something is clearly wrong with this and if the aftercare of the nation’s veterans were top priority, it’s quite possible Perez may have never been arrested for a drug charge.
Read more as reported by Good Morning America:
A U.S. Army veteran who served two tours in Afghanistan is in danger of being deported following a years-old drug conviction that sparked ICE’s taking him into custody.
Miguel Perez Jr., a native of Mexico, came to the United States legally when he was 8 and grew up in Chicago as a legal permanent resident. He served two tours of duty in Afghanistan prior to being discharged from the Army in 2010 with a diagnosis of post-traumatic stress disorder, according to ABC station WLS-TV in Chicago.
That same year, after he was discharged from the Army, Perez was convicted on a felony drug charge, for which he served about seven years in prison. After he got out, ICE, the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency took him into custody. An ICE spokesperson said Perez was targeted for removal after the conviction, WLS reported.
A judge ruled a year ago that Perez should be deported, WLS reported. Perez and his family appealed to Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner for a pardon to wipe away the conviction that sparked the deportation proceedings.
Rauner in February denied that request, and this month a judge refused Perez’s request to overturn the deportation order.
“I went and talked to Miguel and gave him the bad news,” the veteran’s attorney, Chris Bergin, told WLS. “He was disappointed, obviously, but he said ‘I’m not giving up, we’re gonna keep fighting,’ and I was glad to hear that because that’s what I said too.”
The attorney is appealing the court ruling, WLS reported. U.S. Sen. Tammy Duckworth, an Illinois Democrat, has written a letter on Perez’s behalf, according to WLS.
Perez remains in ICE custody.